Gratitude

The peace of God, which passeth all understanding, shall keep your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus.
~ Philippians 4:7
Gather my saints together unto me; those that have made a covenant with me by sacrifice. ~ Psalms 50:5

In this scripture passage, God calls together his people to judge them. He asks if the reason they needed to offer sacrifice of rams and goats was because the Lord was hungry. He reminds them that all the flesh of the earth is His. He created it. If he needed the sacrifices for food, he would be able to feed himself. The sacrifice and gratitude we offer are for our own benefit. They show our devotion and allow us to test the Lord’s willingness and ability to deliver us.

14 Offer unto God thanksgiving; and pay thy vows unto the most High:
15 And call upon me in the day of trouble: I will deliver thee, and thou shalt glorify me.
16 But unto the wicked God saith, What hast thou to do to declare my statutes, or that thou shouldest take my covenant in thy mouth?
17 Seeing thou hatest instruction, and castest my words behind thee.
~ Psalms 50:14–17

The wicked are proud. They don’t want The Lord to change them or to have to strive to change themselves. The Lord speaks of the ways in which they do evil and consent to the breaking of the commandments and then He says this:

21 These things hast thou done, and I kept silence; thou thoughtest that I was altogether such an one as thyself: but I will reprove thee, and set them in order before thine eyes.
22 Now consider this, ye that forget God, lest I tear you in pieces, and there be none to deliver.
23 Whoso offereth praise glorifieth me: and to him that ordereth his conversation aright will I shew the salvation of God. ~ Psalms 50:21–23

The scriptures and prophets, not to mention the Light of Christ that all men have, have all been clear and repetitive in their declarations of righteousness and the requirements of The Lord. If we neglect to follow them, The Lord is not going to come to us directly to tell us in person — he keeps his silence.

We, in wickedness, fashion a God in our own image rather than trying to fashion our image in the countenance of God. The latter is a fundamental approach to life that saints should strive to attain — having God’s image in our countenance, to become like Him.

1 O come, let us sing unto the Lord: let us make a joyful noise to the rock of our salvation.
2 Let us come before his presence with thanksgiving, and make a joyful noise unto him with psalms.
3 For the Lord is a great God, and a great King above all gods.
4 In his hand are the deep places of the earth: the strength of the hills is his also.
5 The sea is his, and he made it: and his hands formed the dry land.
6 O come, let us worship and bow down: let us kneel before the Lord our maker.
7 For he is our God; and we are the people of his pasture, and the sheep of his hand. To day if ye will hear his voice,
8 Harden not your heart, as in the provocation, and as in the day of temptation in the wilderness. ~ Psalms 95:1–8

Humility and gratitude are tied closely together. When I recognize what God has done and created, I must realize what my position is to him, how I rely on him for my very breath, for all I have, for my home, my family, my job, my knowledge, my wisdom. How can I not fall and worship? How could I not be willing to give all I have to him and what he asks of me? If he has given me all this, can he not give me more? And by more, I don’t necessarily mean more financially or in terms of worldly things (although he certainly can), but more in understanding, in faith, in ability.

4 Rejoice in the Lord alway: and again I say, Rejoice.
5 Let your moderation (GR gentleness) be known unto all men. The Lord is at hand.
6 Be careful for nothing (GR don’t be unduly concerned about anything); but in every thing by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known unto God.
7 And the peace of God, which passeth all understanding, shall keep your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus. ~ Philippians 4:4–7

Gratitude is joy. It is remembering what Christ has done for us. Gratitude allows us to have peace and to have comfort is seeking our righteous desires, because when we are grateful and humble and in tune with the Spirit, we will not ask amiss.

If thou art merry, praise the Lord with singing, with music, with dancing, and with a prayer of praise and thanksgiving. ~ D&C 136:28

And a little reminder of growing and maintaining my stewardship: Diligence in duty is a sign of gratitude. To take care of what we have been given shows The Lord that we appreciate what he has provided us and gives him confidence that when he gives us more, we are prepared to take care of that as well.

Thou shalt be diligent in preserving what thou hast, that thou mayest be a wise steward; for it is the free gift of the Lord thy God, and thou art his steward. ~ D&C 136:27